Be Present, To Heal


Be Present, To Heal

One of the fundamental axes of VENA CAVA is to give rise to causes, movements, fascinating characters for their work, through the dissemination of their stories on our platform. It is about opening a connection between people and the events narrated in these stories, which are presented in the form of documentaries, so that the audience can participate generously and proactively in their own lives and, ultimately, in their communities.

Such is the case of the documentary that concerns us on this occasion: Juanita (2015 | 23 min), directed, produced and edited by the young filmmaker Ximena Amescua Cuenca. Juana María Pol Kinil is a Mayan woman who lives in the community of Uspibil, which at the beginning of the 20th century had 19 inhabitants. Uspibil is located in the municipality of Chemax (Yucatan, Mexico), where Juanita lived for thirteen years a story of violence by her ex-husband. Until he decided to leave it.

Descendant of midwives, on the side of mother and father. Long tradition of women healers who survive, in resistance, until the present. He decided to change his life when he could no longer do it: "How about it really kills you," his mother told him, referring to the husband who was preying on his daughter. And Juanita thought, "if you do not value yourself, who will value you". He began to be present in his own life and gave value to his history, to the tradition of which he is a part, that of the women who heal.

In the documentary she is observed dressed in a nurse's uniform in the office where I work for years, as an assistant and also serves as a translator, since the majority of the population only speaks Mayan. But she is also a midwife, and very much a woman valued by her community because of this important service she provides to women.

Along with other women midwives, yerbanderas and sobaderas formed the awakening of women who cure, organization of traditional medical women from eastern Yucatan. Juanita has been a midwife for six years, but still, she says, she needs a lot to learn. The road is long, winding, but full of rewards. He is seen in his typical costume walking through the community, crossing the threshold of a home, greeting children and women in Mayan, and sometimes in Spanish. Her job is to coordinate the organization she founded together with other women we see in the documentary.

Her final objective, as she herself mentions it, is to defend the rights of women. His philosophy is "I must sacrifice something to catch something", which means that he is aware that his work involves neglecting his children sometimes. But she knows that, in the end, it is an urgent job, and that ultimately it also benefits her children, because a community without violence, respectful of women's rights, is a healthier place to grow.

The idea of awakening is the center of its history, the nucleus that moves it to act with generosity, to defend the right of women to give birth according to their traditions, and to live without violence, whatever it may be, including that of medicine. Western, by the way it has been imposed, endangering the knowledge of the community. The awakening was for Juanita and her companions a new beginning, a way to be aware of their environment, their community and their lives individually.

"I started like a little worm, crawling," says Juanita towards the end of the documentary. Perhaps being present means realizing who we are in this moment, discovering what life offers us and doing something with it: creating a new situation that depends on us, to begin, like worms, to ascend towards a full consciousness, to heal in ourselves and bring our love to the community, here and now.

Continuity platform

It is always useful to identify specific lines of human qualities that we are following.
1. What moves you most about this piece? Why is that what moves you the most?
2. If it were up to you, how would you fix this situation?
3. What would you like to be different?
4. How can you do that right now inside yourself?
5. And in your collective?
6. From the perspective that everything you think should be different, without judgments, regardless of the reason you have or not. What are your judgments? It's wrong? It's OK? And from where do you have the certainty of being right?
7. What are the ways of separating from other humans involved in the problem that the documentary exposes? Who are the others? How do you rescue the human essence in them and in yourself, awakening empathy?
8. What is the way to separate yourself from your own humanity here and now, when you judge and judge the circumstances of your life?
9. How do you inspire to be the integral transformation, and from your abundance move the energy towards collective participations as equanimous as determined here and now taking your place in the universe, no more and no less?

Enjoy the First of 4 BlogIAM Podcasts Featuring Juanita

Activism, EnglishClaudia Flores